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Deliberative Democracy, the Public Interest and the Consociational Model

Lookup NU author(s): Professor Ian O'FlynnORCiD



One of the most basic charges levelled at the consociational model is that, although it may provide for conflict management, it fails to provide for the longer-term goal of conflict resolution. This article seeks to respond to this charge by viewing the consociational model through a deliberative democratic lens. In particular, I argue that deliberative democracy provides normative standards that can inform the design of consociational institutions in ways that encourage political leaders to focus on the interests of everyone in society, rather than merely on the interests of their own ethnic group. Insofar as consociational institutions, deliberatively conceived, can have this effect, there is in principle no reason why they might not also provide for conflict resolution.

Publication metadata

Author(s): O'Flynn I

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Political Studies

Year: 2010

Volume: 58

Issue: 3

Pages: 572-589

Date deposited: 03/04/2013

ISSN (print): 0032-3217

ISSN (electronic): 1467-9248

Publisher: Wiley-Blackwell Publishing Ltd.


DOI: 10.1111/j.1467-9248.2009.00795.x


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